White Day and now Black Day?! Valentine’s chaos in Japan

Let’s say you are single now and have someone speciel in your heart for a while.

On 14th of February in Japan, it’s the day for you.

Love confession…❤️

(“I’m in love with you.” or “I have a crush on you.” in Japanese)

You open up your feelings to the one you care – usually with homemade chocolate gift and perhaps a little letter attached –

FROM GIRLS to boys

Do they get a reply right away? Yes and No.

Some do and the others take 1 month, on 14th March, “White Day” you get a “yes” with some biscuits / cookies from the boys.

Believe it or not, that’s how the Valentine’s Day in Japan has been, boosted by confectionary industry’s marketing back in 70-80’s.

Along with it, “GIRI choco,” the chocolate you give people you feel like you sort of socially obliged to give or by sympathy,

and “TOMO choco,” the chocolate you give to your friends

have become the thing.

Wrapping is also important!

So it’s hectic for girls and women around 14th of February, going out shopping for chocolate:

  1. for the one she really cares (including husbands and boyfriends)
    “HONMEI choco” 本命チョコ
  2. for her bosses, colleagues and clients
    “GIRI choco” 義理チョコ
  3. for her friends
    “TOMO choco” 友チョコ

helping chocolate industry’s economy.

If you receive chocolate on 14th of February, you are expected to give back any kind of biscuits or cookies on 14th of March, which applies to all 3 kinds of chocolate above.

Well, what if you are alone and single and lonely around these months?

Korea seems to have invented a brilliant(?) day for you – “Black Day” on 14th of April.

Japan loves the idea and more and more shops, cafes or restaurants introduce the new custom, with their guests wearing in all black, eating black coloured food and drinking dark coloured alcohol.

You might meet your destiny there perhaps?

Best wishes and have a lovely Valentine’s day to you!!


A Japanese in Denmark. Born and raised in Japan then moved to Aalborg, Denmark in 2017, loving to live here being totally myself. Okaeri Project.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *